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More than 300 killed in Peru quake

Last updated on: August 16, 2007 17:09 IST

Several Peruvian cities were destroyed and at least 335 people have been killed in a powerful earthquake that recorded 7.9 on the Richter Scale.

Thousands of people are feared injured and trapped under the debris in the towns of Pisco, Chincha, and other coastal Peruvian towns, in what is feared to be among the worst earthquakes to hit South America.

The damage was so severe that the government was forced to declare a state of emergency.

The quake struck early this morning (Indian time), and its magnitude set off fears over a possible tsunami. Evacuations were ordered immediately.

Another strong earthquake, measuring 6.7 on the Richter Scale, also struck the Solomon Islands today.